Wayne Rooney Chooses Birmingham City Over Saudi Pro League Offer
|Wayne Rooney, Manager of Birmingham City reacts as he is presented as new Birmingham City manager at St Andrew's Trillion Trophy Stadium on October 12, 2023(Image-Getty)
Wayne Rooney disclosed his refusal of a managerial offer from the Saudi Pro League, opting instead to take on the role of Birmingham City's manager. Previously associated with coaching roles at DC United and Derby County, Rooney's appointment comes as Birmingham currently ranks sixth in the Championship, the second tier of English football.
In a joint press conference with Birmingham's chief executive Garry Cook, who had previously attempted to recruit Rooney for the Saudi Pro League during his tenure as its CEO, the former Manchester United and England striker addressed the rejected offer, stating, "We discussed Saudi Arabia. It wasn't going to happen."
Rooney's decision deviated from the path of former teammate Steven Gerrard, who recently took on the managerial position at Al-Ettifaq in July. Rooney emphasized that his decision to manage Birmingham was not a slight on managers who chose Saudi Arabia, explaining, "For me, I felt my development, my pathway, was a different way."
Expressing his enthusiasm for returning to English football, Rooney emphasized his eagerness to achieve success with Birmingham, citing the club's shared ambition for triumph as a pivotal factor in his decision-making process.
Birmingham's next match is scheduled against Middlesbrough on October 21.